Pizzaca Pizzeria & Bar
2/168 Scarborough Beach Road, Scarborough
Ph: (08) 9341 1288
A Local Legend
Pizzaca is well-known and loved in its local area and deservedly so. The fare is decidedly Mediterranean, made with the freshest ingredients sourced locally whenever possible, and cooked with love. Many of the local children obtained their first jobs as juniors at Pizzaca and some of the staff have been there for years. The locals love the place and many of the regulars eat there several times a week.
The menu is understated, café-style, but what comes out of the kitchen, though simply presented, is surprisingly sophisticated and full of amazing flavours. We started with the Mortadella Piadina (not quite a pizza, but very similar) – a wood-fired flatbread topped with rolled slices of really good mortadella, torn pieces of creamy, fluffy, buffalo mozzarella, basil leaves, jalapeños and chilli oil. It was delicious.
Our other starter was Sardines on Cream Cheese Toast – fresh, plump, tasty local sardines on toasted focaccia slathered with cream cheese, served with sweet and sour pickled red onion and caper berries. Both of the starters went down very nicely with the dry and delicately fruity flavour of the 2022 Tomfoolery ‘Cut ‘n Run’ Riesling (Eden Valley, Barossa, SA).
For our mains, we shared the Pork Cotoletta – a decent sized serve of really tender pork on the bone with a tasty, herby, parmesan crumb crust, served with pea and basil pasta and a slice of lemon. The pork was lovely as it came, but a squeeze of lemon took it to a whole new level. This was accompanied by a glass of 2022 Silkwood Estate ‘The Bowers’ Pinot Noir (Pemberton, WA) which complemented the pork nicely, though it was also great with the Riesling.
We also tried a vegan option – Pesto stuffed Gnocchi served with slices of roasted butternut pumpkin and sage butter. At first glance the large gnocchi pieces looked like pale green figs, but they tasted good, and the sweetness of the butternut pumpkin slices provided the perfect companion to the savoury sage butter and pesto flavours.
Kara Bizzaca, who put together the restaurant menu along with her aunt Karen Mansfield, told us some of the history of this family owned and run business. The Bizzaca family has been a fixture in Gildercliffe Street, Scarborough with their business Pizzaca Caffe Pizzeria for many years, providing breakfast, lunch and takeaway pizza to the locals in Scarborough and Doubleview.
When the opportunity came up in May 2022 to take over the premises on the corner of Gildercliffe Street and Scarborough Beach Road, they decided it was time to expand and opened a licensed restaurant, while still maintaining their original premises as a cafe. With a bar and plenty of seating inside, as well as tables on the pavement outside, the restaurant is unpretentious and has a friendly, comfortable atmosphere.
Head chef Marcelo Campos put together most of the dishes on the day we went, but it was pizza chef Abdul that we spoke to.
Abdul told us that the most popular dish (apart from his pizza) was probably the Seafood Spaghettini, though his personal favourite is the Chilli Mussels. Kara’s favourite is the Pork Cotoletta which was indeed very good. While we were there, several of the customers complimented Abdul on the pizza and it was obvious that they were regulars, and very familiar with the venue and its staff.
The restaurant is open from Tuesday to Sunday 4pm to 9:30pm, and the Caffe is open from 7:30am to 2:30pm (3:30pm on weekends). Even if you are not a local, this place is definitely worth a visit.
By Georgina Goss